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European Heritage Days 2023 – Living Heritage


From 01/09/2023 to 30/09/2023



Exhibitions & Fairs,Guided tours, festivals & cultural events

Living Heritage (2023)

“Living heritage” refers to the practices, knowledge and skills that have been passed from one generation to the next, and are still in use today. A variety of skills, trades and professions enable us to maintain and preserve our heritage in many ways. This theme provides the opportunity for us to take a closer look at the work being done by the custodians of our heritage. It will examine how yesterday’s heritage has become today’s, and how this heritage can, thanks to people who pass on their knowledge, be safeguarded for future generations.

Skills, practices and memories, and the ways in which we share them with each other, provide a sense of identity and continuity. This process is always in motion, and in exploring it as our annual theme we will create an opportunity for event organisers to explore it in depth, while promoting appreciation for cultural diversity and creativity.



The European Heritage Days, a joint initiative of the Council of Europe and the European Commission since 1999, are the most widely celebrated participatory cultural events shared by people living in Europe. The pan-European nature of the programme contributes to bringing citizens together and highlighting the European dimension of cultural heritage in the 50 signatory States of the European Cultural Convention. Up to 70,000 events are organised each year in order to help raise awareness of the value of this common heritage and the need for its conservation for present and future generations.

Celebrated in 50 signatory States to the European Cultural Convention, the European Heritage Days highlight the diversity of local skills, traditions, architectural styles and works of art that constitute shared European heritage. Launched by the Council of Europe in 1985 in France, the Days have been organised as a joint initiative of the European Commission and the Council of Europe since 1999. Enabling citizens to explore a wide range of cultural assets through a number of themed events, European Heritage Days help uncover histories of people and places that have contributed to shape the culture and heritage of Europe.

The European Heritage Days raise awareness of heritage, both tangible and intangible, which has helped to shape people’s culture throughout history, thus promoting understanding of the past to better shape the future. Heritage is about objects and places, and the meanings and uses that people attach to them and the values they represent. The European Heritage Days develop and strengthen a feeling of belonging and of responsibility for heritage, underlining the relevance of cultural rights as human rights aiming at assuring the enjoyment of culture in conditions of equality and non-discrimination.

Their aim is to increase understanding of a shared European past, encourage appreciation of traditional values and inspire new heritage conservation and education practices. Cultural heritage has always been recognised as a priority by the Council of Europe. It is also a pivotal theme under Creative Europe, the EU’s programme for the cultural and creative sectors, supporting the European Framework for Action on Cultural Heritage, adopted in December 2018 to secure the long term impact of the European Year of Cultural Heritage.

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More information

Council of Europe: European Heritage Days 
European Commission: European Heritage Days 
Instagram: @europeanheritagedays #EuropeanHeritageDays

Contacts are here!

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